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Quick Hits: Preseason Schedule, Ginning, Kolosov, Alumni, Elliott

June 18, 2024, 12:10 PM ET [223 Comments]
Bill Meltzer
Philadelphia Flyers Blogger •NHL.com • RSSArchiveCONTACT
Quick Hits: June 18, 2024

1) On Monday, the Flyers announced their 2024-25 preseason schedule. For the first time in a number of years, the Flyers have an exhibition game against the Montreal Canadiens on the docket. They also have the usual array of preseason opponents such as two games apiece against the New York Islanders and Boston Bruins. The schedule is below (all times Eastern):

SUN, September 22 at Washington, 3:00 PM
MON, September 23 at Montreal, 7:00 PM
THU, September 26 vs. NY Islanders, 7:00 PM
SAT, September 28 vs. Boston, 7:00 PM
MON, September 30 at NY Islanders, 7:00 PM
TUE, October 1 at Boston, 7:00 PM
THU, October 3 vs. New Jersey, 7:00 PM

The regular season schedule will be available after the NHL Entry Draft. The TV broadcast schedules -- national and local -- will be available at later dates.

2) The Flyers announced on Monday that Lehigh Valley Phantoms defensive defenseman Adam Ginning has been re-signed to a two-year contract. Year one is a two-way structure, and year two pays at the NHL rate whether the Swedish defenseman is in the NHL or the AHL.

Ginning had a strong AHL rookie season in 2022-23 and was rewarded late in the season with one game in the NHL. This past season, with somewhat heightened expectations of competing for NHL time, Ginning got off to a slow start. However, he eventually settled in and showed continued progress. Perhaps most notable, he held his own in nine NHL games and also notched his first goal and point at the sport's top level.

Ginning remains waivers exempt heading into 2024-25. The odds are against him making the Flyers' NHL roster out of camp but there's a seemingly strong possibility that he's the first or second callup in case of injury. He's likely to see at least some NHL games in 2024-25. The real test is a year away, however, when he's guaranteed a $787,500 salary even at the AHL level and must pass through waivers if the Flyers want to send him back to Lehigh Valley.

As I blogged about several months ago, there was erroneous report from Sweden that Ginning planned to go back to Sweden next season. Ginning himself, however, stated when asked that he wanted to continue to pursue his lifelong dream of an NHL career. As long as that window of possibility was realistically still open -- which was pretty clearly the case -- the odds strongly favored him staying in North America to continue that pursuit. This was a classic example of not just running with someone else's story without seeking independent clarification from the subject himself.

3) The same thing happened again more recently regarding young Belarusian goaltender Alexei Kolosov. A report from Russia/Belarus that he was preparing to go back home for next season after spending just a few weeks in North America this spring never seemed likely to become a reality.

First of all, the Flyers had never been told of any such plan. Secondly, the whole purpose of the Flyers' agreement with Dinamo Minsk to loan the goalie back to his KHL club in 2023-24 was to help him prepare to play in North America by the 2024-25 season. He's brief late-season stint with the Phantoms was just to get his feet wet. Lastly, Kolosov is under NHL contract for the next two season and he'd have been in breach of contract to simply pack up and go home.

Kolsov apparently did experience some loneliness and homesickness during his short time with the Phantoms. There were no other Belarusian/Russians around him and he was a bit withdrawn. However, there's no reliable information that the 22-year-old netminder was ever seriously contemplating not coming back here. Nor was he bent out of shape by playing sparingly late in the regular season and being the backup during the Calder Cup playoffs. That was the probable plan all along to just give him a little bit of exposure to the day-to-day atmosphere on and off the ice.

The odd man out on the goalie depth chart in the playoffs wasn't Kolosov. Rather, it was impending unrestricted free agent Felix Sandström, who was relegated to healthy scratch status after playing in 24 AHL regular season games and five games with the Flyers in 2023-24.

4) Tonight, the Flyers Alumni Association will hold a pickeball event at Bounce Pickleball in Malvern, PA. Participating Alumni will include Paul Holmgren (an avid player), Scott Hartnell, John LeClair, Neil Little, Brad Marsh and Bob Kelly. I'll post photos/video tomorrow on the Alumni's social media outlets and official website.

5) Congratulations to Flyers Alum goalie Brian Elliott for a fine NHL career. "Moose", who played 542 NHL regular season games plus 48 games in the Stanley Cup playoffs, has officially retired as an active player to become the head of goaltender development and goalie scout for the St. Louis Blues.

As a member of the Blues during his playing days, Elliott won the Jennings Trophy in 2011-12 while sharing the net with Jaroslav Halak in a 1A/1B playing time arrangement. In 2015-16, Elliott was the playoff starter (18 games) for coach Ken Hitchcock after sharing time roughly evenly with Jake Allen during the regular season. The Blues reached the Western Conference Final before being defeated in six games by the San Jose Sharks.

Subsequently, Elliott spent four seasons with the Flyers. He battled through injury issues but was a solid split-time starter when healthy during the early part of his run with the Flyers. He was primarily paired with the gifted by very injury-prone Michal Neuvirth. Later, an aging Elliott was a serviceable backup to Carter Hart. As a Flyer, Elliott had a 65-38-14 record in the regular season with a 2.86 GAA, .902 save percentage and six shutouts. In 2018, Elliott gamely battled through injury but was ineffective in the Eastern Conference quarterfinal against the Pittsburgh Penguins while appearing in four the six games in the series.
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